Laurence J. Kirmayer, MD

Laurence J. Kirmayer, MD, FRCPC, is James McGill Professor and Director, Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, McGill University. He is Editor-in-Chief of Transcultural Psychiatry, a quarterly scientific journal published by Sage (UK) and directs the Culture & Mental Health Research Unit at the Department of Psychiatry, Sir Mortimer B. Davis—Jewish General Hospital in Montreal where he conducts research on mental health services for immigrants and refugees, psychiatry in primary care, the mental health of indigenous peoples, and the anthropology of psychiatry. He holds a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Senior Investigator Award for a research program entitled “The integration of culture in psychiatry,” which includes studies on the relevance of the cultural formulation in psychiatric consultation and a cross-national comparative study of models of mental health care for multicultural societies. He also directs a CIHR funded strategic training program in Culture and Mental Health Services Research.

His past research includes funded studies on the development and evaluation of a cultural consultation service in mental health, pathways and barriers to mental health care for immigrants, somatization in primary care, cultural concepts of mental health and illness in Inuit communities, risk and protective factors for suicide among Inuit youth in Nunavik (Northern Québec), and the role of metaphor in psychiatric theory and practice. He founded and directs the annual Summer Program and Advanced Study Institute in Social and Cultural Psychiatry at McGill. He is also founder and Co-Director of the National Network for Aboriginal Mental Health Research funded by the CIHR. He co-edited the volume, Current Concepts of Somatization (American Psychiatric Press, 1991) and has two co-edited books in preparation, Healing Traditions: The Mental Health of Canadian Aboriginal Peoples (University of British Columbia Press), Understanding Trauma: Integrating Biological, Clinical, and Cultural Perspectives (Cambridge University Press).


The 2007 Conference